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the years thirty-one to thirty-three: next, the Epodes, in his thirty-fourth and fifth years : next, the first book of his Odes, in three years, from his thirty-sixth to his thirty-eighth year; the second book in his fortieth and forty-first year; the third book, in the two next years: then, the first book of the Epistles, in his forty-sixth and seventh year : next to that, the fourth book of his Odes, in his forty-ninth to his fifty-first year. Lastly, the Art of Poetry, and second book of the Epistles, to which an exact date cannot be assigned
36. Est mihi purgatam crebro qui personet aurem,
Sólye senescentem mature sanus equum, ne
A voice there is that whispers in my eart
* Ver. 7.
+ He has excelled Boileau's imitation of these verses, Ep. x. ver. 44.
And Boileau himself is excelled by an old poet, whom, indeed, he has frequently imitated, that is, Le Fresnaie Vauquelin, who was the father of N. V. des Yvetaux, the preceptor of Louis XIII. whose poems were published towards the end of his life, 1612. He says that he profited much by
Friend Pope, be prudent; let your muse take breath,
Horace plainly alludes to the good genius of Socrates, which constantly warned him against approaching evils and inconveniencies. РОРЕ has happily turned it to Wisdon's voice; and as happily has added, which sometimes one can hear.” The purged ear is a term of philosophy, The idea of the jaded Pegasus, and the Lord Mayor's horse, are high improvements on the original. A Roman reader was pleased with the al, lusion to two well-known verses of Ennius.t
the satires of Ariosto. Boileau has borrowed much from him. He also wrote an Art of Poetry. One of his best pieces is an imitation of Horace's Trebatius, being a dialogue between him. self and the Chancellor of France,
* Ver. 1l,
+ Sicut fortis equus spatio qui forte supremo
Vicit Olympia, nunc senio confectu quiescit,
Ennius, poeta antiquus (says Jos. Scaliger, with his usual bluntness) in Scaligeriana, magnifico ingenio, Utinam hunc
37. Virtutis veræ custos, rigidusque satelles. *
Free as young LYTTELTON, her cause pursue;
A just and not over-charged encomium on an excellent man, who always served his friends with warmth, (witness his kindness to Thomson,) and his country with activity and zeal.
His Poems, and Dialogues of the Dead, are written with elegance and ease; his Observations on the Conversion of St. Paul, with clearness and closeness of reasoning; and his History of Henry II. with accuracy, and knowledge of those early times, and of the English constitution; and which was
haberemus integrum, & amissemus, Lucanum, Statium, Silium Italicum, & tous ces garçons-la. The learned M. Monoye, to whom we are indebted for so many additions to the Menagiana, reads with great acuteness, Gascons-la, by which term he thinks Scaliger points out the inflated, bombastic style of Lucan and Statius. How elegantly, and even poetically, does Quintilian give his judgment of Ennius: Hunc sicut sacrós veLustate lucos adoremus, in quibus grandia & antiqua robora, jam non tantam habent speciem, quantam religionem. Lib. X. c. 1.
compiled from a laborious search into authentic documents, and the records lodged in the Tower, and at the Rolls. A little before he died, he told me, that he had determined to throw out of the collection of all his works, which was then soon to be published, his first juvenile performance, the Persian * Letters, written, 1735, in imita
* Montesquieu himself also says, that in this agreeable work there were some juvenilia that he would wish to correct : " for though a Turk ought necessarily to see, think, and speak, like a Turk, and not like a Christian, yet many persons do not attend to this circumstance, in reading my Persian Letters." See an entertaining collection of his Original Letters, p. 180. In this collection are some curious particulars relating to his great work, The Spirit of Laws. He tells his friend, the Count de Guasco, “ Though many kings have not done me that honour, yet I know one who has read my work; and M. de Maupertuis has informed me, that this monarch is not always of my opi. nion. I have answered Maupertuis, and told him, I would lay a wager, I could easily put my finger on those passages which the King dislikes." In page 166, he thus speaks of Voltaire : “ Quant à Voltaire, il a trop d'esprit pour m'entendre; tous les livres qu'il lit, il les fait, après quoi il approuve ou critique ce qu'il a fait. And afterwards, speaking of Voltaire's dismission from Berlin, “ Voilà donc Voltaire qui paroit ne sçavoir ou reposer sa tête ; ut eadem tellus quæ modo victori defuerat; deesset ad sepulturam. Le bon esprit vaut beaucoup mieux que le bel esprit,” p. 198. It is much to be lamented, that the History of Louis the Eleventh, which Montesquieu had written, was burnt by a mistake of his secretary, p. 98. Mr. 2
tion of those of his friend Montesquieu, whom he? had known and admired in England; in which he said there were principles and remarks, that he wished to retract and alter. I told him, that, notwithstanding his caution, the booksellers (as, in fact, they have done) would preserve and insert
Stanley, for whom Montesquieu had a sincere esteem and regard, told me, that Montesquieu assured him, he had received more information from the Commentaries of Azo on the Codex and Digest, (a famous civilian of Bologna in the twelfth cen, tury,) than from any other writer on the civil law. He is said to have had 10,000 scholars. Trithemius mentions him, c. 487. See Arisii Cremonam Litteratam. Tom. i. p. 89.
I beg to add, that Lyttelton was not blind to the faults and blemishes of his friend Montesquieu. See notes on the History of the Life of Henry II. p. 291, 4to. where 'he is censured for an excessive desire of saying something new upon every subject, and differing from the common opinions of mankind.
That accomplished lady the Duchess D'Aiguillon constantly attended Montesquieu: in his last illness, to the time of his death, 1755. One day, during her absence of a few hours from his chamber, an Irish Jesuit, Father Roth, (author of some severe criticisms against the Paradise Lost,) got introduced to the dying philosopher, and insisted on having the key of his bureau, that he might take away his papers. When the Du. chess suddenly returned, and reproached the Jesuit for this proceeding, he only answered, “ Madam, I must obey my superiors.” It was owing to the interposition of the celebrated physician, Van Swieten, that the Spirit of Laws was permitted to be sold and read at Vienna.